Webinar #2 "ESG and Incentives of Fund Manager"

March 27, 2024


ESSEC - Amundi Chair on Asset & Risk Management


"ESG and Incentives of Fund Manager"

March 27, 2024


16.30 - 17.15: "Are All ESG Funds Created Equal? Only Some Funds Are Committed"

by Michelle LOWRY, Drexel University

17.15 - 18.00: "Revealed Beliefs about Responsible Investing: Evidence from Mutual Fund Managers

by Stefano RAMELLI, University of St. Gallen

Over the past years, flows allocated to sustainable investment have been steadily growing. This trend reflects the increasing concerns of investors for sustainability-related issues. For BlackRock, “nowadays, most asset managers explicitly and publicly embrace ESG integration.” According to another source, investment advisors expect to incorporate ESG elements in nearly two-thirds of the portfolios in the coming decade. In practice, ESG funds claim that their strategy is based on value creation which delivers both financial returns and ESG outcomes. Yet, despite increasing research, it still remains unclear whether these sustainable investment policies have a real impact, and the debate remains open as to how investment managers perceive the practice of selecting firms based on ESG criteria and how they expect these strategies to deliver financial performance.

In new research, Michelle Lowry (Drexel University and ECGI) raises the question of which funds are truly committed to ESG. She examines the motivations of ESG fund managers, showing that not all ESG funds have a significant impact on ESG performance and outcomes. The study aims to identify methods to distinguish between ESG funds that are genuinely committed and those that are not.

In a second paper presented by Stefano Ramelli (University of St. Gallen and SFI), the authors raise the question of how much personal investment ESG fund managers have in their funds, suggesting this may reflect their genuine beliefs and decisions regarding ESG investments. The research aims to understand the underlying preferences and convictions of ESG fund managers through their investment choices.

PAPERS (coming soon)

Lowry, Wang & Wei (2024).pdf